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Side by Side
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May 27, 2016, 12:58 AM

Side by Side -- Blanche and John Heidengren -- June 2016

What does the Bible say about “rest”?  It’s summer and a good time to ask this question. The word “rest” means “peace” or “ease” or “refreshment”. The Bible speaks quite highly of “rest”. God rested after 6 days of creation. The 10 Commandments made resting on the Sabbath part of the Law. One day of rest in every seven days. God is very serious about rest.

God wants us to rest because it doesn’t come naturally to us. To rest, we have to trust that God will take care of things for us. From the beginning (Genesis 3), when we decided that we would start making all the decisions, mankind has become more tense and less able to relax.

For the Christian, the ultimate rest is found in Christ. He invites all who are “weary and burdened” to come to Him and cast our cares on Him. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”  (Matthew 11:28) It is only in Him that we find our complete rest—from the cares of the world, from the sorrows that plague us, and from the need to work to make ourselves acceptable to Him.

This summer, don’t just take a vacation – build some “rest” into your weekly routine.

~ Pastor John

 

Need a breakthrough in your life? I recommend adding some time in your day to worship and sing praises to the Lord. A new friend shared this on her blog recently, “A few days ago, in the “about to wake up stage” of sleep, I heard the words “I am training you in your praise. Worship is your warfare! My people, MAGNIFY ME!!! Praise is your protection!!” (lanavawser.com)

She then shared Psalm 22: 3-5:  “Yet, I know You are most holy – it is indisputable. You are the Enthroned God, surrounded with songs, living among the shouted praises of Your princely people. Our father’s faith was in You, over and over they trusted in You, believing in You and You came through. Every time they cried to You in their despair, You were faithful to deliver them. You didn’t disappoint them.” (The Passion Translation).

Yes, God lives in the praises of His people! When we praise Him, He reveals Himself, speaking to us and giving us words of wisdom for our situation, and healing for our souls and bodies. He gives us His perspective and His grace for that moment and for the future. In Acts 16:25-26, Paul and Silas were in jail and since worship was already a habit for them, they broke out in hymns to the Lord even while they were chained to the wall! Their worship became a weapon against the enemy and God freed them by the power of a mighty earthquake. There’s a song that I just learned that goes, “Worship is my warfare, My praise is a weapon! C’mon and bless Him, C’mon and praise His name!”

May we use this weapon of praise that our heavenly Father gives us to lift up His holy name, to push back the gates of hell, and to usher in the atmosphere of heaven with wisdom and healing for our situations.

~ Blanche

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